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juke011

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Hello to all of you. My name is Stacy and I'm 39. Sadly, we are all here for the same reason...the need for support from those who truly understand. I am reaching out for support because my mom, Susan 56yo, was diagnosed with lung cancer and multiple bone mets in March 2016. She has went through radiation to her skull, hip, sacrum and pubis bone. The pubis bone is now fractured. She also completed 4 rounds of chemo. Drugs were Carboplatin, Taxol and Avastin. She goes back for another PET scan this Thursday. Her health has declined severely since her diagnosis. I'm scared, depressed, confused, angry...you name it. I am her primary caregiver as most of our family is already in Heaven. How is everyone coping with their situations? I'm having a very difficult time accepting this. Any advice?

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Hi Stacy,

Just read your post and am so sorry to read of your mother's diagnosis. I was diagnosed almost one year ago with inoperable stage IIIB adenocarcinoma and am about your mother's age (I'll be 59 next month).I was also treated with Carboplatin and Taxol plus radiation, and was really down & out for several months. I haven't had any further treatment since May, and am feeling much better, so part of her decline in well-being could be side effects of her treatment. I wish I had something more to offer other than my prayers for you & your Mom. The treatment can be really rough & I, personally, think it would be harder to watch your loved one go through it than to be the patient.

I think scared, depressed, confused and angry sounds pretty normal considering the situation you are in.  There is a lot of good information about lung cancer, as well as people who have inspirational stories of living with cancer.  You've come to the right place. Have you asked her doc about palliative care? I always sort of equated that with hospice and thought it was something only for people who were at death's door, but it is more about getting the most quality of life possible while living with cancer, not just for the dying.

I hope you are taking care of yourself and aren't having to go through this alone. I'm sorry I don't have more to offer, but I just wanted you to know that I will keep you & your Mom in my prayers and I wish you peace as you travel this difficult road.

Ruthie

 

 

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Stacy,

How does one cope with a loved one's lung cancer diagnosis? If the literal meaning of cope is to deal effectively, then one doesn't.  I was the patient.  I didn't deal effectively with my diagnosis or treatment, particularly failed treatments.  My wife was my caregiver.  She didn't cope either but persisted nevertheless.  There simply is no coping with manifest uncertainty and fear.  So what can you do for your mother?

You can stand by her, carry some of her weight, love her, and care for her.  You can assist with treatment and help overcome side-effects.  You can talk of pleasant family memories, or laugh about that infamous Christmas or Thanksgiving celebration that every family seems to have.  You can thank her for giving you life, wisdom and courage.  You can help her find something in each day to enjoy.  You can help her laugh or cry or both.  You can talk about family pictures, helping her to remember joyful occasions.  You can talk about special memories, dreams come true, special things she did for you and your family.  These are things only you can do.

Despite her devastating diagnosis, treatment is providing extra life.  Amid the mayhem of treatment and discomfort, try and help her find a little piece of joy everyday.

You'll have more questions and we are pleased to entertain them.

Stay the course.

Tom

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Hi Stacy,

I am very sorry to hear of your mom's diagnosis, but I am happy that you joined LCSC. You'll be able to connect with many people like Ruthie and Tom, who can help answer questions, share stories, and help you realize that you're not alone in this.

Being a caregiver is challenging in many ways, but there are always silver linings. Here is a link to LUNGevity's Caregiver Resource Center, which provides tip sheets on topics such as working with your mom's health care team, keeping family and friends informed, taking care of yourself, finding emotional support, managing finances, and more:
https://www.lungevity.org/support-survivorship/caregiver-resource-center

Please keep us posted, and feel free to ask questions and participate in any of the discussions. We are here for you!

Lauren
--
Digital Community Manager
LUNGevity Foundation

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Ruthie...thank you so much for your kind words. I could never explain how difficult this is for me. I'm so glad to hear you made it through your treatment. Your story gives me hope that this "new normal" for my mom will pass. I need to look into palliative care. I need help managing her pain. Her life consists of sleeping, eating and taking pain medicine. It's so horrible to watch. She, like everyone else with cancer, deserves so much more! Thank you for keeping us in your prayer and you will be in mine. ~Stacy


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Tom...you've opened my eyes to what all this means and what I can do for my mom. It has all been such a roller coaster ride that is completely out of control. I appreciate all of your kind words as well. Since you said you were the patient, I'm hoping you are doing well now. I find it so hard to look at today and not think of the future but somehow, I hold it together when she is near. Thank you for all the ideas on ways to keep us in the now.


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Tom...you've opened my eyes to what all this means and what I can do for my mom. It has all been such a roller coaster ride that is completely out of control. I appreciate all of your kind words as well. Since you said you were the patient, I'm hoping you are doing well now. I find it so hard to look at today and not think of the future but somehow, I hold it together when she is near. Thank you for all the ideas on ways to keep us in the now. ~Stacy


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